Friday, December 28, 2007
"Yechi" Lubavich Mishichist Camp Loses Court Battle.
By the way, I am not one to get involved in the fighting between the "Yechi" mishichist sect and the non-Yechi camp within the Lubavich movement, but I heard from a friend that on Thursday, there was a decision in the court case over which of the two groups "owned" (a.k.a. had rights to) 770 Eastern Parkway ("770").
The decision was that 770 belongs to the non-yechi camp.
In short, the two camps, both divided and both followers of the Lubavicher Rebbe, have opposing views of how to view the Rebbe now that he has passed on. The yechi camp, also known as the mishichist camp view the Rebbe as Moshiach (the Massiah). The non-yechi camp view the Rebbe as their leader, but only potentially Moshiach, (but because his body is dead and buried at the Ohel, so far he is not Moshiach).
In Chassidus (the mystical teachings of Torah), there is the concept of each Rebbe being moshiach, meaning that he brings people closer to G-d and that he reveals new aspects of Torah, etc., however that doesn't mean that he is the Moshiach (the Messiach that Jews are waiting for).
Anyway, the importance of this court decision is that since the Lubavicher Rebbe's death around 10 years ago (probably longer by now), the yechi camp has taken over 770 Eastern Parkway ("770") to the exclusion of the non-yechi Lubavichers. Most shluchim (emmissaries sent to various places in the world by the Rebbe to open up Chabad Houses and bring Jews closer to G-d) are non-yechi, regardless of what their personal beliefs are about the Rebbe and whether when Moshiach comes, whether it will be the Rebbe. These shluchim congregate in Crown Heights, Brooklyn once each year for the annual convention. The problem is that last year, one Yechi guy threw a bench at the shluchim, another threw a Gemara at one, and yet another set of them blocked entry by forming a linked-chain to prevent the shluchim from entering 770. Further, last year (or the year before, I can't remember), they blasted music that made being in 770 unbearable, and overall, have caused many problems for the Lubavich movement by infiltrating the Lubavich schools and teaching the children moshichist beliefs, some of which don't have a basis in Torah (although they will prove to you otherwise).
All this being said, the court decided that 770 belongs to the non-yechis, so this is a big victory for us. However, the meaningfulness of this though is limited, because it is almost certain that the Yechi camp will appeal this decision and it will go back to court for another round.
My personal view is that there should be no division between Jews, but the reality of it is that there are different beliefs, and often enough, both belief sets are right. G-d is infinite, and is expressed in infinite ways. It only makes sense that one group of Jews believe that he should be worshipped with fear and others to believe that he should be worshipped with love. Similarly within the Lubavich movement -- obviously the Rebbe was a great Jew and a Tzaddik in our time. Also, the Rebbe has the capacity to be Moshiach and may very well be (we will see soon when Moshiach comes). However, now that the Rebbe is dead, it makes sense that there will be a group of Jews who believe that if we call him forth to be Moshiach, that will influence him to come back sooner; thus, the yechi camps go to extremes to try to get people to acknowledge that he is Moshiach (similar to how people tried to convince others that JC was the son-of-G-d and that he had not died). Then there is the non-yechi camp who believes that following the Rebbe's teachings will bring Moshiach sooner (whoever Moshiach ends up being). This seems to me to be the essence of the division between the two camps.